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Old 06-25-2011, 06:22 AM
 
20,793 posts, read 52,354,094 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toobusytoday View Post
The AP designation is on the transcript, so it's no secret who takes what, but there was no place at all for the scores. AP's really have proliferated. When my daughter graduated from HS in 2003, our school offered 5 AP classes, 8 years later we have about 2 dozen!
We have a choice of 30 AP classes at our high school and 15 college in the school classes. We have about 2000 kids in the school and there are multiple sections of pretty much every course. When DS was applying to colleges, none asked for test scores up front, but when he was accepted, they wanted that information in the 'accepted student' information.

Quote:
Originally Posted by killer2021 View Post
Yea it depends on the school. State schools and public schools don't really ask for the scores since they are more lenient on who they admit. Its not always based on academics.

Stricter schools will judge almost entirely on the college essay, ap scores, sat scores, grades etc.
I have come across NO school that bases college acceptance on the AP test scores. They want to see that you have taken the most rigorous course schedule your high school offers but their decision is on your GRADES in that class, not the test score. A lot of kids in our school don't even take the AP tests for the AP classes taken because a lot of school don't accept them for "credit" any more, just placement in higher level classes freshman year. Every top school we have looked into looks first at your class schedule-the difficulty of classes taken, then your test scores from ACT/SAT tests, your GPA/Class Rank, then your essay and/or interview if they do them. Most of the admission counselors have told us that usually the essay is the make it or break it for acceptance for most of the top students.
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Old 06-25-2011, 06:58 AM
 
Location: Eastern time zone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nana053 View Post
In general, I don't believe these lists are very accurate or very helpful. The criteria are heavily weighted toward things like ACT and SAT scores and the numbers of IB, AP, etc. offered. They also weighted the average scores on the IB and AP exams, but they may offer many and kids may not take the exams for lots of reasons.

At any rate, many of the schools that came in high on the list are magnet schools and thus have a selective enrollment.
One of the schools listed last year (or possibly the year before, I've lost track) was a math/science magnet in my district. The magnet is great, but the school it's actually part of was a D rated school. They don't mention that, nor do they mention that the magnet kids take their English and social studies classes with the rest of the students.
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Old 06-25-2011, 07:14 AM
 
Location: Eastern time zone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StarlaJane View Post
The list is complete BS. I've taught at one of the Top 10 schools and was not impressed; in fact, quite the opposite. I would also take issue with the "College Bound" category as I know that the only universities to which many of my former students were bound was a local community college.

I would LOVE to see how this list stacks up to national private and parochial schools. I know it really isn't fair to do a comparison but the sad fact is that, even at the best public schools, those students are not being prepared for leadership.
Our local IB program likes to tout itself as "equivalent to a fine private school education". Er....no.
I graduated from one of those "fine private schools". There's no way the local IB-within-a-school is holding language classes with four people in them, or offering lit and science classes interesting enough other teachers come in for discussions during their free periods. The teachers aren't relocating classes when it suits their purposes. The labs and art studios aren't open after school and on weekends (though I'll grant you the football coach and marching band director are probably there). They don't have the deep pockets of a BB&N or Exeter alumni association, or the wide pool of students to draw from. They certainly don't have a 5:1 student:teacher ratio. And ultimately, a great public option is still held to a certain set of state rules. I mean no offense to IB or Cambridge or anything of that ilk, it's fine for what it is. The people in charge just need to be happy with what they have, and not try to tart it up to be something else entirely.
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Old 06-25-2011, 08:49 AM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
84,958 posts, read 98,776,620 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killer2021 View Post
Yea it depends on the school. State schools and public schools don't really ask for the scores since they are more lenient on who they admit. Its not always based on academics.

Stricter schools will judge almost entirely on the college essay, ap scores, sat scores, grades etc.
Uh, excuse me? It is harder to get into the University of Colorado as an instate student than it is to get into many of the private schools in this state.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aconite View Post
Our local IB program likes to tout itself as "equivalent to a fine private school education". Er....no.
I graduated from one of those "fine private schools". There's no way the local IB-within-a-school is holding language classes with four people in them, or offering lit and science classes interesting enough other teachers come in for discussions during their free periods. The teachers aren't relocating classes when it suits their purposes. The labs and art studios aren't open after school and on weekends (though I'll grant you the football coach and marching band director are probably there). They don't have the deep pockets of a BB&N or Exeter alumni association, or the wide pool of students to draw from. They certainly don't have a 5:1 student:teacher ratio. And ultimately, a great public option is still held to a certain set of state rules. I mean no offense to IB or Cambridge or anything of that ilk, it's fine for what it is. The people in charge just need to be happy with what they have, and not try to tart it up to be something else entirely.
There are few private high schools of that description, though. In my area, most private schools are religiously oriented, and except for a few Catholic schools, many are lower quality than the public schools. Even some of the top Catholic schools do not offer all the options my kids' public school offered.
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Old 06-25-2011, 09:30 AM
 
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Before y'all go any further, I'd advise you to check out this thread before it's buried; this is the wealthiest county in the country with top High Schools speaking...

How come no Fairfax County Schools are on this list?

Last edited by erasure; 06-25-2011 at 10:50 AM..
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Old 06-25-2011, 10:10 AM
 
12,455 posts, read 27,063,999 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killer2021 View Post
Yea it depends on the school. State schools and public schools don't really ask for the scores since they are more lenient on who they admit. Its not always based on academics.

Stricter schools will judge almost entirely on the college essay, ap scores, sat scores, grades etc.
I'm sorry but you are misinformed. My three kids applied to probably 25 schools altogether and the majority were private colleges, not state schools. No matter, no schools asked for AP scores.
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Old 06-25-2011, 10:16 AM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
84,958 posts, read 98,776,620 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toobusytoday View Post
I'm sorry but you are misinformed. My three kids applied to probably 25 schools altogether and the majority were private colleges, not state schools. No matter, no schools asked for AP scores.
IIRC (it's been a while now), my kids had their AP scores reported to various colleges. You could pick several; I don't remember the exact number. When my younger daughter transferred to the U of CO, a school where she had her scores reported 2-3 years earlier, they said they had not kept that information and she had to go through the AP service, I believe, to get the scores re-reported. Also from what recall, the schools did not use the AP scores as a criteria for admission. In the case of some of the courses, the tests had not yet been taken at application time.
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Old 06-25-2011, 04:02 PM
 
15,743 posts, read 13,167,427 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toobusytoday View Post
I'm sorry but you are misinformed. My three kids applied to probably 25 schools altogether and the majority were private colleges, not state schools. No matter, no schools asked for AP scores.
I can only speak to my daughters experience. When she applied to Columbia early action they asked for any AP scores or college credits already earned. So did Brown and one other school I cannot remember.

Oh and this was all in the past year. Maybe its a new thing?
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Old 06-25-2011, 04:57 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
4,033 posts, read 8,245,548 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aconite View Post
Our local IB program likes to tout itself as "equivalent to a fine private school education". Er....no.
I graduated from one of those "fine private schools". There's no way the local IB-within-a-school is holding language classes with four people in them, or offering lit and science classes interesting enough other teachers come in for discussions during their free periods. The teachers aren't relocating classes when it suits their purposes. The labs and art studios aren't open after school and on weekends (though I'll grant you the football coach and marching band director are probably there). They don't have the deep pockets of a BB&N or Exeter alumni association, or the wide pool of students to draw from. They certainly don't have a 5:1 student:teacher ratio. And ultimately, a great public option is still held to a certain set of state rules. I mean no offense to IB or Cambridge or anything of that ilk, it's fine for what it is. The people in charge just need to be happy with what they have, and not try to tart it up to be something else entirely.
Exactly. And, yet, so many parents delude themselves that their kids are getting "top-notch" public school educations; I really wonder what they are comparing them to. In fact, those same parents are also the ones touting their schools, towns, etc. as great and superb simply for the sake of their own pride. Heaven fobid they not live in the greatest town with the greatest schools These are also the same people who convince themselves that one can get the same education and professional resources at LSU as they can at Harvard.

It always amazes me how eager people are for validation, and that really is the only purpose of this list. I think a lot of parents and students would get a huge reality check if a list of top private schools were compiled and compared to the schools on this list, especially SAT scores and universities attended.

As you said, if you understand it for what it is (a list of the top public schools in the nation), then you have a healthy comprehension of just what this list is all about.
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Old 06-25-2011, 05:03 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
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I will add that AP classes in and of themselves don't mean squat; everything depends on how well a student does on the test, and how well a student does on the test depends on the teacher as well as how much he/she learned in class.
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